Copyright 2011 by Donald R. Snow

Sections of the Class Notes Return to > Class Outlines > Don Snow's Listings or . This page was last updated 2011-10-06.

  1. Instructors are Donald R. and Diane M. Snow of Provo and St. George, Utah (, )
  2. These notes with active Internet links are posted on the Utah Valley Technology and Genealogy Group website > Class Outlines > Don Snow's Listings. Underlined words in these notes are usually clickable links in the online version.
  3. This class will discuss two major topics: (1) LDS Records and (2) The Nauvoo Databank -- much more complete sets of notes on each of those topics are posted on the above website or get to them directly at and


  5. Some of the major collections of LDS data online are the following (See the LDS and Utah Notes link above for many more)
  6. -- -- includes family history information on 57,000 members of the LDS Church from 1830 to about 1900 everywhere, e.g. Kirtland, Missouri, Nauvoo, Europe, and the early Utah period; also links to maps, settlements, place lists, etc.
  7. Church History Library --
  8. BYU Library Digital Collections --
  9. Mormons and Their Neighbors compiled by Marvin Wiggins -- BYU Library web site -- references to more than 100,000 LDS biographical sketches (references only, not the sketches themselves)
  10. Early LDS writings -- -- posted by Bill Smith
  11. Susan Easton-Black Early LDS Membership Compilations -- online at WorldVitalRecords in image format (not text-searchable, but available free in FHCs) -- much of it is in and all of it is in the Nauvoo Databank in text-searchable form
  12. LDS Related Infobases, including early LDS periodicals --


    1. "Nauvoo" refers to where it was compiled, not what's in it; was compiled by missionaries in Nauvoo under the direction of Dr. Milton V. Backman Jr., Retired BYU Professor of Church History
    2. Includes information on most members of the Church from 1830 to about 1900 everywhere, e.g. Kirtland, Missouri, Nauvoo, Europe, and the early Utah period
    3. Text is in Folio format, so is completely searchable with the powerful Folio 4 search engine (see below); includes images of people and places that are in books such as Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah
    4. NOT a family history database of individuals, but the transcribed text of publications, writings, articles, books, and journals
    5. Brings many sources into one text file to search all at once, including many items not available elsewhere -- see the Nauvoo Databank class notes cited above for links to parts that are available elsewhere
    6. Only available to the public in a few places, e.g. Kirtland, Nauvoo, and some FHCs, mostly in Northern Utah
    7. Click on Nauvoo Databank Instructions to see a list of books and articles included
    1. Membership of the LDS Church 1830 to 1858 (50 volumes) and Early RLDS Membership Records (6 volumes) compiled by Susan Easton-Black -- in text format, so is every word searchable in Nauvoo Databank
    2. Marriages in the Nauvoo Region -- many are online at Illinois Online Marriage Records Index now --
    3. Inscriptions Found on Tombstones and Monuments in Early LDS Burial Grounds -- lists of names from kiosks at Old Nauvoo Burial Ground and on monument at foot of Parley Street at Mississippi River in Nauvoo
    1. Davis Bitton's Guide to Mormon Diaries and Journals -- also at
    2. Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah 1847 to 1868 -- also at
    3. Latter-day Saint Biographical Encyclopedia by Andrew Jenson -- also at
    4. Biographical information from Seventies Records, High Priests Records, High Council minutes, and other sources
    5. Record of Members 1841-1845 and 1842 LDS Census
    6. Many books and articles about LDS and Church history including Our Pioneer Heritage 1847 to 1868 (19 vols.); Heart Throbs of the West (19 vols.); Treasures of Pioneer History (4 vols.); An Enduring Legacy (12 vols.)
    7. Writings -- unpublished by and about early LDS including 550 autobiographies, journals, and diaries; over 170 biographies; letters and reminiscences, including more than 60 reminiscences of Joseph Smith
    8. Biographies of the Prophets (Presidents of the Church from Joseph Smith thru Pres. Ezra Taft Benson)
    1. Many of these are also in places such as the old LDS Collector's Library CD 1997, etc.
    2. Joseph Smith Collection -- Teachings of JS, Words of JS, writings, and some papers
    3. Pioneer Periodicals -- Nauvoo Neighbor (Excerpts May-July 1843), Times and Seasons (1839-1845), Elders Journal (1838), Messenger and Advocate (1835-1838), Evening and Morning Star (1831-1834), The Frontier Guardian (1847-1852, excerpts), Far West Record 1830-1844
    4. Selections from the Journal History of the Church (1839-1846)
    5. Journal of Discourses (1854-1886, 26 volumes)
    6. Collected Discourses (1886-1898, 5 volumes compiled by Brian H. Stuy)
    7. Messages of the First Presidency (6 volumes by James R. Clark)
    8. Church Chronology (1805-1913 by Andrew Jenson)
    9. Historical Record (8 volumes by Andrew Jenson) on infancy of the Church
    10. History of the Church (1820-1847 - 7 volumes by B. H. Roberts)
    11. Comprehensive History of the Church (6 volumes by B. H. Roberts)
    12. History of Utah (4 volumes by Orson F. Whitney)


  18. QUERY -- For simple searches press F3 or click on the word "Search" at the top left of the screen, then "Query"
    1. Start with minimal search terms and only add more to narrow down if you get too many hits -- entering too much search data at the start may eliminate hits due to spelling and/or data entry errors
    2. Searching for "Joseph Smith" (without the quotes), then clicking OK, gives all pages with Joseph or Smith or both words, with the search terms highlighted on the page
    3. The case (caps or small) of search terms does not matter in Folio, so searching for "Joseph Smith" gives same hits as "joseph Smith"
    4. You see the number of PAGES with hits on them, not the number of hits, e.g. 1/50, which means Page 1 out of 50 pages with hits on them -- there may be many hits on a page
    5. F4 or Large forward double arrow at bottom takes you to the next hit -- the page indicator, 1/50, won't change to 2/50 until you get to the hit on the next page
    6. F5 or Small forward double arrow at bottom takes you to the next page of hits and you see the page counter change to 2/50, then 3/50, etc.
    7. If there is only one hit per page, then both sets of double arrows do the same thing.
    8. The back double arrows go back one hit or one page of hits at a time, respectively.
    9. Searching for "Joseph Smith" (no quotes) with this type of Query gives pages containing both terms, for example, Joseph A. Banks and George A. Smith, but not necessarily about Joseph Smith
    10. Click on the tabs at lower left to see list of hits, contents,
    11. Clicking Prev in Query gives you the past queries, so you can reuse or edit them.
  19. ADVANCED QUERY -- For advanced searches press F2 or click on the word "Search" at the top left of the screen, then "Advanced Query" -- Advanced Queries have more options than Simple Queries
    1. Now entering the string "joseph Smith" (without the quotes) first shows that the word Joseph occurs in the Databank 85667 times, then Smith occurs 79984 times, and both on the same page occurs 48842 times
    2. Adding more words, e.g. Jr., shows Jr. occurs 9071 times and these three words occur on the same page 2942 times in the Databank -- but these may not all refer to the same person on that page, e.g. you may get a page with Lovina Jane Smith & Joseph City, Arizona, and Brigham Young Jr.
    3. Adding quotes, e.g. "Joseph Smith" (including the quotes), gives hits with the words in that order (36,072 hits)
    4. "joseph smith jr." (1402 hits) gives words in that order, and it includes "joseph smith, jr." with a comma, so punctuation, as well as case, is ignored
    5. Adding @5 after the words in quotes, e.g. "Joseph Smith"@5, finds occurrences of Joseph and Smith within 5 words of each other (46,004 hits), so you get Joseph Smith; Smith Joseph; Joseph F. Smith; Joseph Fielding Smith; Smith, Robert Evan Joseph; etc. -- everything you got before plus more
      1. Larger numbers after @ usually give more hits since you are allowing more words between, but you also get more extraneous hits
      2. @2 means just those two words together, but in either order
      3. @ searches find things that you can't find by searching straight text, e.g. "nauvoo teach*"@10 finds the words Nauvoo and teach or teacher or teaching within 10 words of each other, so you can find information about teaching in Nauvoo
      4. To find Josephs with any event that occurred in 1805, e.g. birth, married, died, wrote letter, etc., search for "Joseph 1805"@5
      5. To find Smiths married to Hales search for "Smith Hale"@10
  20. WILDCARDS -- Question Mark: ? = a single character; Asterisk: * = any number of characters
    1. Wildcard searches take longer, but include misspellings
    2. Example of misspelling -- "jospeh smith"@5 brings up 30 hits, so there are 30 misspellings of Joseph Smith's name -- indicates why you need to try various spellings, misspellings, and wildcards -- you can find all of these by searching for "j*s*p*h smith"@3
    3. Wildcards can be used to find dates written in all formats, e.g. "23* dec* 1805"@6 will pick up all dates written as 23 Dec 1805; December 23, 1805; December 23rd, 1805; 23rd day of December 1805; etc.
    4. "Vermont Smith"@10 will pick up all Smith's with a Vermont connection within 10 words, such as lived, died, etc.
    5. "joseph smith emma new york"@30 brings up the letter Joseph Smith wrote Emma from New York City in 1832
    1. To highlight a block of text left click at top and drag to the bottom
    2. To highlight a large block it is easier to click at the top, scroll down, and hold the shift key down while clicking at the bottom -- this highlights everything in between and is a Windows feature that works in any Windows program
    3. With text highlighted press CTRL-C or Right-Click Copy to get it on the clipboard; then CTRL-V or Right-Click Paste will paste it where you want
    4. Copying text by highlighting gets all the visible text, including the sources at the start of each paragraph, but not the sources that are in links (footnotes, etc.) as in the Susan Easton-Black Membership of the Early LDS Church compilations -- to get those also, use the tagging method below
    5. To copy an image Left Click it to get the image box around it, then Right-Click-Copy and Paste it into a document in a word processor (e.g. Wordpad, LibreOffice, or Word) or to a graphics program (e.g. MS Paint or Irfanview )
    6. To print the highlighted text click on File/Print and click Selection
    7. To copy entire articles from the Autobiographies section it is usually easier to copy the corresponding rich text file (rtf) from the Writings folder which is usually a subfolder under the Nauvoo Databank folder -- has the same text, but the paragraphs aren't separated by source citations as in the main Databank -- files in the Writings folder are titled alphabetically by the person's name and can be opened with most word processing programs.
    1. Tagging a record means marking it for printing or exporting -- each paragraph is a record, so each paragraph has to be tagged separately to export or print it (but you can highlight the whole thing in one large block, as mentioned above)
    2. To tag a record put the cursor anywhere in the paragraph, then click Edit > Tag Record (or press CTRL-T) -- you see a red vertical line appear to the left of that paragraph
    3. Tag as many records as you want.
    4. To export all tagged records into one file click File > Export and tell it where to save the file, what name to give it, and the format you want, e.g. Generic Text or Rich Text File -- then click Export to save it
    5. Exporting or printing tagged records includes the sources even if they are not visible, as in the Susan Easton-Black Membership of the Early LDS Church database -- the earlier technique of highlighting and printing doesn't include sources that are not visible as text
    6. To print all tagged records click File > Print
    7. To clear (delete) all tags after exporting or printing, click Edit > Clear All Tags
  23. Additional views - click on the tabs at lower left to see Hits in Context, Contents, and other views


  24. Much LDS information available online and in the Nauvoo Databank for genealogy, family history, and Church history
  25. For more help with the Nauvoo Databank read the help instructions in the Folio program and in the Nauvoo Databank
  26. For more information and links for LDS and Utah data and the Nauvoo Databank see Don's full class notes referenced above.


    1. Search the database for some early Church member and location to learn what it contains and how to use it.
    2. Search the Nauvoo Databank in a FHC for an ancestor (or use Erastus Snow) to see how to use it.  Go through the first few hits to see how to proceed.
    3. Search the Nauvoo Databank to find events on some date written in various forms, e.g. to find events on 27 Jun 1844 do an @ search of "27* jun* 1844"@5, so it will pick up various ways that the date may be written.
    4. Highlight some text either online or in the Nauvoo Databank and right-click-copy-paste it into a document in Wordpad, for example.

    Return to Don Snow's Class Listings page or to the Utah Valley Technology and Genealogy Group home page.